Wednesday, December 08, 2004

Trends in diversity training

Corporate diversity programs, which took a hit with the recession in the United States, are regaining momentum, says Mike Hyter, president and CEO of consulting firm Novations/J. Howard Associates.

Hyter points to these trends:

"--Development of all employees. More organizations integrate their diversity efforts with overall development programs. While focus is still on the needs of specific groups, the new trend is to insure that all employees are given equal access to skills training and other career opportunities.

--Growing age bias. Women, African-Americans and others in the workforce have made gains, but bias complaints by older employees continue to rise and are now at the highest level in more than ten years.

--Advancement of women. While women’s needs continue to hold the attention of management, emphasis has shifted from just recruitment and retention to career development and advancement of women into the upper executive ranks, including C-level and corporate board positions.

--Workforce globalization. No single factor has done more to transform and expand diversity training than accelerating globalization of the workforce. International trade competition, the Internet and economic integration have combined to redefine diversity. Global organizations seek global solutions, even when issues and demographics vary by country and region."

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